Chasing the Gold: 2021 Golden Globe Predictions
With the 2021 Golden Globe Nominations this weekend, we thought we would get some of the staff predictions and reasonings behind their picks. So we enlisted Ryan McQuade, Joey Gentile, Brett Doze, Shadan Larki, and JD Duran to contribute to this piece. Watch the 2021 Golden Globes this Sunday and check back to see which one of them below picked the most correct categories after the winners are announced.
Best Picture – Drama
Promising Young Woman
The Trial of the Chicago 7
Ryan: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – It’s been the frontrunner since it came out and tonight is the night it starts its run towards Best Picture.
Joey: The Father – The film played extremely well with the HFPA and ignoring the overperformance of The Father is foolish.
Brett: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – I’ve considered this the frontrunner for Best Picture for months, and I think it will solidify that status at the Globes.
Shadan: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – The night’s most coveted category might be one of the trickiest to predict. On the one hand, the Globes like to set the stage for awards season and be the first to award what they believe will be the big darling of the awards season, which may lead them to give this to Nomandland and cement the film’s status as a Best Picture frontrunner. However, the Globes also love big ensemble pieces with big stars, which is why I’m predicting The Trial of the Chicago 7 to take this one.
JD: Mank – Mank has nominations for Gary Oldman, Amanda Seyfried, composers Atticus Ross and Trent Reznor, writer Jack Fincher and director David Fincher. Perhaps that means nothing, but it seems like a heavy player here.
Best Picture – Comedy/Musical
Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
Ryan: Hamilton – Just feels like something they will award so they can get the headlines. The fact that it is nominated says why it will win.
Joey: Hamilton – The HFPA specifically went out of their way to make sure this was eligible. I mean, come on.
Brett: Borat Subsequent Moviefilm – The only other film that could take this is Hamilton unless the Globes decide to create more chaos and hand it to Music.
Shadan: Hamilton –The category is called ‘musical or comedy’ and the HFPA has a history of giving deference to musicals in this category which is why I’m giving Hamilton an edge here. Hamilton feels too glitzy to ignore and I don’t think the HFPA can resist giving Lin Manuel Miranda a chance to deliver another knockout awards speech.
JD: Hamilton – I honestly have no idea what to think about this category. Two of these five have been maligned by critics and Hamilton is a filmed stage production from its 2016 run. In many ways, this should come down to Palm Springs and Borat Subsequent Moviefilm (both very good), but my gut feeling is Hamilton.
Emerald Fennell – Promising Young Woman
David Fincher – Mank
Regina King – One Night in Miami
Aaron Sorkin – The Trial of the Chicago 7
Chloé Zhao – Nomadland
Ryan: David Fincher – I’ve said all year he is the winner, and this is where the turning of the tide begins for Fincher.
Joey: Chloé Zhao – People are saying Fincher, I disagree- the HFPA will continue with the (highly deserved) Zhao trend.
Brett: David Fincher – This is a risky pick, both because Chloé Zhao dominated critics awards and because it might make Mank the first film since Gravity to only win Best Director at the Globes. But I think Fincher’s overdue narrative and flashy direction will take over (even though I would LOVE to see Zhao win).
Shadan: Chloé Zhao -Chloé Zhao already made Globes history when she became the first Asian woman ever nominated for Best Director and she’ll continue to be a trailblazer when she wins. As I said at the top of my piece, the HFPA loves being the first televised awards show and the first to award someone. I don’t doubt that Nomadland will walk away from Sunday night a winner, my only question is in which categories those wins will take place.
JD: Fincher – Mank seems to be a beloved film by HFPA. It’s nominated in almost every category it was eligible for, and I imagine they will give Fincher his due as a result.
Best Actor – Drama
Riz Ahmed – Sound of Metal
Chadwick Boseman – Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Anthony Hopkins – The Father
Gary Oldman – Mank
Tahar Rahim – The Mauritanian
Ryan: Chadwick Boseman – Even though I think Hopkins is clearly the better performance and should win, this will be the start of the sweep for Boseman.
Joey: Anthony Hopkins – The Father played extremely well with the HFPA and the campaign of “he’s never won a Golden Globe” has arrived.
Brett: Chadwick Boseman – This is coming down to Boseman and Anthony Hopkins, who shockingly has yet to win a competitive Globe. I think Boseman wins out here, especially since he was nominated for Supporting Actor.
Shadan: Earlier I said that the HFPA likes to cement frontrunner status. They won’t pass up the opportunity to be the first major awards body to posthumously award Boseman for his work in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.
JD: Chadwick Boseman – Perhaps I’m biased as I think Boseman gave the best male performance of 2020 in Ma Rainey, but it won’t surprise me if I’m not alone in that thinking. His death is tragic (he will be missed for a long time), but a win here isn’t sentimental. It would be a very well deserved victory.
Best Actress – Drama
Viola Davis – Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Andra Day – The United States vs. Billie Holiday
Vanessa Kirby – Pieces of a Woman
Frances McDormand – Nomadland
Carey Mulligan – Promising Young Woman
Ryan: Carey Mulligan – Either Nomadland or Promising Young Woman is going home empty-handed from the night. Given this is the HFPA, I expect them to give some love to Mulligan over Frances. That doesn’t mean Mulligan will win the Oscar, just that she has the high ground at this ceremony.
Joey: Frances McDormand – This feels like a “no brainer” but in this year of absolute uncertainty nothing is off the table. A double win for Nomadland feels likely.
Brett: France McDormand – This is probably the toughest category to call, and I may regret not going with Carey Mulligan here. But I could see this being Nomadland’s sole win, and I don’t think McDormand will be hurt by the fact that she was so heavily awarded just three years ago.
Shadan: Carey Mulligan – Carey Mulligan’s performance makes Promising Young Woman the juggernaut that it is. The HFPA will want to recognize the film and Mulligan’s work is, perhaps, the best way to do that. The HFPA also tends to award younger actors and actresses and being that this is the Hollywood Foreign Press, they tend to give deference to non-American talent (these are themes you’ll notice throughout my predictions). The Best Actress race this year is crowded and fluid. A win for Mulligan establishes her as the new frontrunner and carries extra weight. The HFPA won’t want to miss the chance to make headlines.
JD: Carey Mulligan – It’s not my favorite Mulligan performance, but there’s an audacity to the performance (and the film) that could resonate with voters. And she’s due, so she’s my pick.
Best Actor – Comedy/Musical
Sacha Baron Cohen – Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
James Corden – The Prom
Lin-Manuel Miranda – Hamilton
Dev Patel – The Personal History of David Copperfield
Andy Samberg – Palm Springs
Ryan: Sacha Baron Cohen – Barring Miranda as the upset winner, Baron Cohen wins this Globe.
Joey: Sacha Baron Cohen – The HFPA already rewarded him for the first, they’ll do it for the second.
Brett: Sacha Baron Cohen – It really feels like Borat is going to sweep the Comedy/Musical categories, and that actually might be enough to make it the most awarded film of the night. I don’t think the HFPA will have any problem with giving SBC another Globe for this role.
Shadan: Sacha Baron Cohen – Sasha Baron Cohen won this category in 2007 for the original Borat and he’s a lock to repeat 14 years later. The HFPA has been loving Baron Coen in recent years, nominating him last year for the barely-seen limited series The Spy and in 2019 for his Showtime series Who Is America?. He’s double-nominated this year and you can bet he won’t be going home empty-handed.
JD: Lin-Manuel Miranda – For the same reasons I noted about the category itself, I’m picking Miranda. His performance in Hamilton is almost iconic at this point, but given that others from the show are missing in terms of nominations, who the hell knows.
Best Actress – Comedy/Musical
Maria Bakalova – Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
Kate Hudson – Music
Michelle Pfeiffer – French Exit
Rosamund Pike – I Care a Lot
Anya Taylor-Joy – Emma
Ryan: Maria Bakalova – The easiest category to pick on the night.
Joey: Maria Bakalova – Place your bets against her wisely…
Brett: Maria Bakalova – Pfeiffer and Pike probably make this category more competitive than I originally thought, but Bakalova has all the momentum.
Shadan: Maria Bakalova – The HFPA loves ingenues and being among the first to crown a new Hollywood star. Bakalova was a complete unknown before Borat and she’s quickly becoming the star of the season. Plus, Bakalova is Bulgarian making her a perfect match for the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Anya Taylor-Joy could spoil here, but she’s double-nominated and likely to win for The Queen’s Gambit, clearing the way for Bakalova to win this one.
JD: Maria Bakalova – Again, what a weird category. Don’t get me wrong, I quite like Rosamund Pike a lot, and Anya Taylor-Joy is an inspired pick. But they seem like left-field choices, so I’m going with the one whose been getting the most attention of late in terms of campaigning.
Best Supporting Actress
Glenn Close – Hillbilly Elegy
Olivia Colman – The Father
Jodie Foster – The Mauritanian
Amanda Seyfried – Mank
Helena Zengel – News of the World
Ryan: Amanda Seyfried – Smart money is to bet on Close or Colman. The wild card is Foster and I totally could see her winning. But I’m starting to think Seyfried wins this since Mank has a lot of love and I don’t see it just winning one. Basically, anyone can win but Zengel.
Joey: Olivia Colman – She’s never lost a Golden Globe, and now they have the chance to double win her? Bet on her.)
Brett: Glenn Close – It’s really tempting to pick Olivia Colman after The Father exceeded expectations with nominations, but I think Close will win this tight race…for now.
Shadan: Amanda Seyfried – The HFPA loves movies about Hollywood, so perhaps I’m a little naïve for not predicting Mank in other categories. It feels as though buzz on the David Fincher-Netflix project has faded, but Amanda Seyfried is a young star brilliantly playing another young star (Marion Davies). Her performance is consistently hailed as one of Mank’s bright spots—a win for her here will allow the Globes to honor her work and the film as a whole.
JD: Olivia Colman – Like Best Actor, this is a category where my personal pick and who I think wins is synonymous. Colman may not resonate given her recent success in The Favourite, but she’s the best supporting actress of the year. Especially of those nominated with her (along Seyfried is great as well).
Best Supporting Actor
Sacha Baron Cohen – The Trial of the Chicago 7
Daniel Kaluuya – Judas and the Black Messiah
Jared Leto – The Little Things
Bill Murray – On the Rocks
Leslie Odom Jr. – One Night in Miami
Ryan: Jared Leto – This is just going to happen, I can feel it in my bones. Also, don’t be shocked if this is also Baron Cohen and he gets two wins.
Joey: Jaren Leto – He elevates an unwatchable movie to watchable. The HFPA has a really shotty track record with rewarding actors of color, they are gonna reward Baron Cohen in lead, and Bill is just here for the free drinks.
Brett: Jared Leto -Perhaps I’m just preparing myself for the possibility, but I have a gut feeling that we’ll have an Aaron Taylor-Johnson situation here and that the HFPA won’t give Sacha Baron Cohen two acting awards on Globes night.
Shadan: Daniel Kaluuya – There is a possibility the HFPA could go big for Sasha Baron Cohen and award him twice this year. But winning two Golden Globes in one year is rare, and the HFPA likes to spread the wealth. I’m predicting they’ll let the Comedy Actor globe be Cohen’s big prize and use this as a way to award Daniel Kaluuya. As I’ve mentioned throughout this piece, the HFPA has a penchant for awarding young talent, and Kaluuya is one of the most dynamic actors working today. Plus, the star is a Brit playing an icon of American civil rights— a transformation the HFPA will want to recognize.
JD: Daniel Kaluuya – Daniel Kaluuya is a towering presence in Judas and the Black Messiah, and I can’t fathom him losing this category. It will be a very well-deserved win for him, and I can’t wait to see his acceptance speech.
Promising Young Woman
The Trial of the Chicago 7
Ryan: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – The Globes love Sorkin, that’s all you need to know about this one.
Joey: The Father – People are saying Sorkin, he’s a nominee darling, not a winner darling. Plus The Father will dominate the night and especially when Zeller didn’t get Director, THIS is where they say ‘sorry’ and give him the win.
Brett: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – Aaron Sorkin has been nominated here nine times, and he won twice. I think he nabs his third here, signaling Trial’s path to the Best Motion Picture – Drama win.
Shadan: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – In my opinion, Best Screenplay is the night’s toughest category. Many are predicting Emerald Fennell for Promising Young Woman, that’s a great prediction and a worthy winner. The HFPA will want to award Fennell and her talent as an emerging writer and filmmaker. The fact that she’s a major presence in The Crown’s fourth season which the HFPA really loved only helps her case. Like Fennell, Sorkin also wrote and directed his film and is a double nominee. The HFPA is a big fan of Sorkin’s work and has nominated and awarded him when the Oscars haven’t (Steve Jobs). Sorkin has a history with the HFPA and major name recognition. I think they’ll honor him here even if they decide to give the Drama prize to another film.
JD: The Trial of the Chicago 7 – For the same reasons as Director, I won’t be surprised to see Jack Fincher win here as well. That said, I’m going with my gut here and picking Aaron Sorkin to take this category.
Best Animated Film
The Croods: A New Age
Over the Moon
Ryan: Wolfwalkers – If there was ever a place for a Best Animated upset, it would be at the Golden Globes.
Joey: Soul – Soul is the better film, by far. But Wolfwalkers should win this as it has the better animation. And the HFPA already threw the curveball win last year with Missing Link. Two in a row? I don’t think so.
Brett: Soul – Of the places I think Wolfwalkers could potentially pull the upset, it’s here and the Annies. But Pixar wins every time they have an original film nominated here (even Cars won).
Shadan: Wolfwalkers –Soul is one of Disney/Pixar’s most beloved and critically acclaimed films ever. And it’s going to be a major awards player, across multiple categories come time for the Oscars—I may very well regret not picking it. But, I’m giving Wolfwalkers the edge here because the HFPA has a long history of going against Pixar and awarding films from other studios. Wolfwalkers is also a co-production between two international studios.
JD: Wolfwalkers – Give me that Wolfwalkers all day long. My gut feeling is that Soul takes this category, and smart money says don’t ever bet against Disney or Pixar, but I’m championing Wolfwalkers till the end.
Best Foreign Language Film
The Life Ahead
Two of Us
Ryan: Another Round – While a Minari pick here would make sense due to the news, I still think the HFPA will go with what most have as the frontrunner in this category for the Oscar.
Joey: Another Round – People are saying Minari, I’m saying no. This win will play into the curveball director and Mads Mikkelson Best Actor Oscar nomination that I’m predicting.
Brett: Minari – Minari (one of the most American films of the year) is the only one here that will get a Best Picture nomination at the Oscars unless Another Round pulls a huge shocker.
Shadan: Minari – The Hollywood Foreign Press was rightfully criticized for placing Minari, an American production in the Foreign Film category. They’ll want to rectify their mistake by giving the film a much-deserved win.
JD: Another Round – A lot has been said about Minari here, and it wouldn’t surprise me if they steal this category, but I’m hoping Another Round pours out a victory here.
Best Original Score
News of the World
The Midnight Sky
Ryan: The Midnight Sky – Such a crazy nomination that you sort of have to pick it. Plus the HFPA does love Desplat.
Joey: Soul – I really wanna say The Midnight Sky cause it feels like it’s going that way. But Soul feels safe.
Brett: Soul – I think Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are going to win here, and Soul feels like the safer bet over Mank at the moment.
Shadan: Soul – One of the reason’s why I’m predicting Wolfwalkers to take the Animated Prize is because Best Score provides the HFPA the opportunity to spread the wealth and make sure Soul is given a Golden Globe. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are also nominated in this category for Mank, but a win for Soul also honors the work of their co-collaborator, the great Jon Batiste.
JD: Mank – When you’re nominated twice, do you have a better chance at winning? Or do you split votes and worsen your cause? In this case, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are winning this category. For which film? Flip a coin. I’m going with Mank though.
Best Original Song
“Fight for You” – Judas and the Black Messiah
“Hear My Voice” – The Trial of the Chicago 7
“Io sì (Seen)” – The Life Ahead
“Speak Now” – One Night in Miami
“Tigress & Tweed” – The United States vs. Billie Holiday
Ryan: “Speak Now” – The perfect place to award One Night in Miami and Leslie Odom Jr.
Joey: “Io sì (Seen)” – I’m gonna say that not only will The Life Ahead song win for Dianne Warren- but it’s also going to be that “extra push” to get Sophia Loren her Oscar nomination.
Brett: “Speak Now” – One Night in Miami…did pretty well in terms of nominations, even though it missed the Best Picture nom, and I think this is its best shot at a win.
Shadan: “Speak Now” – There are two pieces of Golden Globes wisdom that apply to this category. The HFPA likes to spread the wealth across their nominated films, and if you’re a double nominee, you’re likely going to win in at least one of your categories. Leslie Odom Jr. is a major awards player for his work as Sam Cooke in One Night in Miami and he could very well take home the Best Supporting Actor prize. Of course, he’s also in Hamilton which only helps his chances. A win here will allow the HFPA to honor Odom Jr. as a performer and ensure that One Night in Miami gets a win Sunday night.
JD: “Fight for You” – This is me literally reaching into a hat and picking a winner.